The decision to build a large heat and power plant in Norilsk was made almost simultaneously with the creation of the combine which could not exist without it. Before its creation, a temporary power plant (WPP) operated in the village: at the beginning of the 1940s, WPP-2 produced only 7300 kilowatts in an out-of-the-way mode. This was catastrophically little for the expanding production. As for the residential buildings of the village, light was a rare phenomenon there.
In 1939, a technical design for the Norilsk CHPP was developed for the final capacity of 75 thousand kW/h. On June 15, 1941, the first metal structures of the CHPP building were installed. It was built by prisoners: by order of the combine’s head, Panyukov, on July 5, 1941, a separate camp point was opened at the construction of the CHPP.
On December 13, 1942, the first stage of the CHPP was put into operation: the first turbine and the first boiler with a capacity of 25 thousand kilowatts started working. The firstborn of the large Norilsk power industry gave industrial power to the combine and the village. In December 1942, the construction of a water conduit from a temporary pumping station on the bank of the Dolgoye lake to the thermal power station was completed.
In 1944, the second turbine and the second boiler of the CHPP were put into operation, in 1946 – the boiler No.3 and turbine No.3 started working. The CHPP plant at that time was running on the coal mined at the Schmidt mount deposits. With the opening of Messoyakha and the construction of a gas pipeline in Norilsk, a new era began. On June 27, 1970, CHPP-1 announced with a beep that the first unit of the combined heat and power plant was converted to gas fuel. Economists calculated: the savings amounted to 50 thousand tons of standard fuel.
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Text: Svetlana Samokhina, Photo: Nornickel Polar Division archive